THE WOMAN WITH THE ALABASTER BOX (Continued)
Scripture Reading: Luke 7: 36-50
36 And one of the Pharisees desired him that he would eat with him. And he went into the Pharisee’s house, and sat down to meat.
37 And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,
38 And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.
39 Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner.
40 And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on.
41 There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty.
42 And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most?
43 Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged.
44 And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered into thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head.
45 Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet.
46 My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment.
47 Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little.
48 And he said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven.
49 And they that sat at meat with him began to say within themselves, Who is this that forgiveth sins also?
50 And he said to the woman, Thy faith hath saved thee; go in peace.
Next, Jesus told Simon, "Thou gavest me no kiss, but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet." The first word kiss is phelema in the Greek and is different from the second in this verse which is kataphileo. Simon did not even give Jesus a simple sign of fraternal affection, but the woman kissed much or again and again in a tenderly and loving manner. This point is made to draw out a most critical difference than is seen on the surface. From a spiritual standpoint, there is a lack of a spiritual touching versus a simple show of affection.
In the Old Covenant, the Prophet Ezekiel affords a picture of what this woman did as she kissed Jesus’ Feet. An equivalent word in Hebrew is touch as found in Ezekiel 3:13 which reads, "I heard also the noise of the wings of the living creatures that touched one another, and the noise of the wheels over against them, and a noise of a great rushing." These living creatures are part of the Throne of God that sat in the prophet’s midst. They touched one another and this touching carries the same meaning as kissing! Although Ezekiel was in the Captivity, it did not stop God’s Presence from coming to His location. The very next verse of the same Scripture begins, So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away…! So it is with the people of God who are trapped in the religious system as this woman was in Simon the Pharisee’s day and in this day. A proper kiss or touch of Jesus lifts one and takes him away into Spirit.
To further highlight the power of this woman’s tender and continual kissing of Jesus’ Feet, there are two other important instances in Scripture to compare. The same affection was shown by the Father who saw his prodigal son a long way off, had compassion and ran to him and fell on his neck and kissed him. What love! The second instance is when Judas Iscariot betrayed our Lord with a kiss (Matthew 26:48-49). Judas did not betray Jesus with an ordinary fraternal kiss, but the weight of the meaning is the same kiss as this woman. Betrayal while simultaneously hailing Him as Master. Treason to the nth degree! The sinister plot was not without the foreknowledge of God and despite the evil intent, a higher Love overrode its power.